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Starting the Community Solid Server

Quickly spinning up a server

Use Node.js 18.0 or up and execute:

npx @solid/community-server

Now visit your brand new server at http://localhost:3000/!

To persist your pod's contents between restarts, use:

npx @solid/community-server -c @css:config/file.json -f data/

Local installation

Install the npm package globally with:

npm install -g @solid/community-server

To run the server with in-memory storage, use:

community-solid-server # add parameters if needed

To run the server with your current folder as storage, use:

community-solid-server -c @css:config/file.json -f data/

Configuring the server

The Community Solid Server is designed to be flexible such that people can easily run different configurations. This is useful for customizing the server with plugins, testing applications in different setups, or developing new parts for the server without needing to change its base code.

An easy way to customize the server is by passing parameters to the server command. These parameters give you direct access to some commonly used settings:

parameter name default value description
--port, -p 3000 The TCP port on which the server should listen.
--baseUrl, -b http://localhost:$PORT/ The base URL used internally to generate URLs. Change this if your server does not run on http://localhost:$PORT/.
--socket The Unix Domain Socket on which the server should listen. --baseUrl must be set if this option is provided
--loggingLevel, -l info The detail level of logging; useful for debugging problems. Use debug for full information.
--config, -c @css:config/default.json The configuration(s) for the server. The default only stores data in memory; to persist to your filesystem, use @css:config/file.json
--rootFilePath, -f ./ Root folder where the server stores data, when using a file-based configuration.
--sparqlEndpoint, -s URL of the SPARQL endpoint, when using a quadstore-based configuration.
--showStackTrace, -t false Enables detailed logging on error output.
--podConfigJson ./pod-config.json Path to the file that keeps track of dynamic Pod configurations. Only relevant when using @css:config/dynamic.json.
--seedConfig Path to the file that keeps track of seeded account configurations.
--mainModulePath, -m Path from where Components.js will start its lookup when initializing configurations.
--workers, -w 1 Run in multithreaded mode using workers. Special values are -1 (scale to num_cores-1), 0 (scale to num_cores) and 1 (singlethreaded).

Parameters can also be passed through environment variables.

They are prefixed with CSS_ and converted from camelCase to CAMEL_CASE

eg. --showStackTrace => CSS_SHOW_STACK_TRACE

Command-line arguments will always override environment variables.

Alternative ways to run the server

From source

If you rather prefer to run the latest source code version, or if you want to try a specific branch of the code, you can use:

git clone
cd CommunitySolidServer
npm ci
npm start -- # add parameters if needed

Via Docker

Docker allows you to run the server without having Node.js installed. Images are built on each tagged version and hosted on Docker Hub.

# Clone the repo to get access to the configs
git clone
cd CommunitySolidServer
# Run the image, serving your `~/Solid` directory on `http://localhost:3000`
docker run --rm -v ~/Solid:/data -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server:latest
# Or use one of the built-in configurations
docker run --rm -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server -c config/default.json
# Or use your own configuration mapped to the right directory
docker run --rm -v ~/solid-config:/config -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server -c /config/my-config.json
# Or use environment variables to configure your css instance
docker run --rm -v ~/Solid:/data -p 3000:3000 -it -e CSS_CONFIG=config/file-no-setup.json -e CSS_LOGGING_LEVEL=debug solidproject/community-server

Using a Helm Chart

The official Helm Chart for Kubernetes deployment is maintained at CommunitySolidServer/css-helm-chart and published on ArtifactHUB. There you will find complete installation instructions.

# Summary
helm repo add community-solid-server
helm install my-css community-solid-server/community-solid-server